‘No Men are Foreign’ Poem Question & Answers Class 9 English

Thinking about the Poem

  1. (i) “Beneath all uniforms …” What uniforms do you think the poet is speaking about?

    (ii) How does the poet suggest that all people on earth are the same?
  2. In stanza 1, find five ways in which we all are alike. Pick out the words.
  3. How many common features can you find in stanza 2? Pick out the words.
  4. “…whenever we are told to hate our brothers …” When do you think this happens? Why? Who ‘tells’ us? Should we do as we are told at such times? What does the poet say?


  1. (i) “Beneath all uniforms…”
    The poet is likely referring to the uniforms worn by people in different professions or roles, such as military uniforms, which can symbolize division based on nationality, occupation, or social status.

    The poet suggests that beneath these external symbols (uniforms), there is a common humanity. Despite the differences in appearance or roles, everyone shares the same essential qualities and experiences
  1. The ways in which we are alike in stanza 1:
  • Breathes: Indicates the commonality of life and the shared act of breathing.
  • Land: Emphasizes that the earth we walk upon is the same everywhere.
  • Brothers: Implies a familial connection and shared human bonds.
  • Earth: Reinforces the idea that in death, we all return to the same earth.
  • Lie: Points to the commonality of mortality and the shared fate of death.
  1. Common features in stanza 2:
  • Sun, air, water: These represent basic elements of nature that everyone, regardless of nationality, experiences.
  • Peaceful harvests: Indicates the commonality of peaceful times and prosperity.
  • War’s long winter starv’d: Highlights the shared experience of suffering during times of war-induced famine.
  • Hands, lines, labor: These words emphasize the shared physical and labour-related aspects of human existence.
  1. When do you think this happens? Why? Who ‘tells’ us? : This likely happens in times of conflict, war, or political tension. It could be instigated by leaders, authorities, or influential figures who promote divisive ideologies to further their own agendas.

Should we do as we are told at such times? What does the poet say? : The poet strongly advises against following such instructions. The speaker suggests that hating our brothers not only harms them but ultimately harms ourselves. The poet advocates for empathy, understanding, and a rejection of divisive messages that promote hatred.

In essence, the poem encourages readers to look beyond superficial differences, reject messages of hatred, and recognize the shared humanity that unites all people.

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